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  • 03 April, 2023

  • 4 Min Read



About SCO Expansion

  • As a result of the United States departure from the region, Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states have taken steps to diversify their security allies. Through this process, the nations have gotten closer to China.
  • The recent restoration of diplomatic ties between Saudi Arabia and Iran, facilitated by China, and Iran's impending admission as the SCO's newest member are significant developments in this regard.
  • Saudi Aramco (Investor) announced that it has upped its investment in China by finalising a planned joint venture in SCO provides a very good opportunity for India to connect with the leadership of Central Asian countries and that is a very big takeaway.
  • India has a good record of economic growth and handling problem which is a problem of other countries and lays the foundation for huge foreign investment. Northeast China and buying a share in a privately managed petrochemical business in response to the Saudi government's decision.

Background About SCO

  • An ongoing International Intergovernmental Organisation is the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.
  • The announcement of its foundation was made on June 15, 2001, in Shanghai (China) by the Republics of Kazakhstan, China (People's Republic), Kyrgyzstan, the Russian Federation, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.
  • The mechanism of the Shanghai Five came before it.
  • During the SCO Heads of the State summit in St. Petersburg in June 2002, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization Charter was ratified, and it became effective on September 19, 2003.
  • Russian and Chinese are the official languages of the SCO.
  • A political, economic, and military organisation with Eurasian roots, the SCO works to uphold regional stability, security, and peace.
  • It accounts for almost 20% of the world's GDP, 40% of the world's population, and 22% of the planet's surface.

SCO Member Countries

  • Eight nations make up the SCO: the Russian Federation, the Republic of Tajikistan, the Republic of Uzbekistan, the Republic of India, the Republic of Kazakhstan, the People's Republic of China, the Kyrgyz Republic, and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan.
  • Observer states in the SCO are the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, the Republic of Belarus, the Islamic Republic of Iran, and the Republic of Mongolia.
  • The Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, the Kingdom of Cambodia, the Republic of Turkey, the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, and the Republic of Azerbaijan are the six dialogue partners of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).

India and SCO

  • India has the opportunity to launch global and regional counterterrorism initiatives as well as regional initiatives to combat the illicit drug trade due to the SCO.
  • India can increase collaboration to address regional security issues by utilising the SCO's Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS).
  • India can use the SCO to promote the Chabahar Port Project and the International North-South Transport Corridor (INSTC). To work more closely together on the Chabahar port and other connectivity initiatives, India, Iran, and Uzbekistan jointly established a trilateral working committee in 2020.
Targets and Objectives
  • Encouraging neighbourliness and mutual trust.
  • Encouraging collaboration in commerce, business, the economy, research, technology, and culture.
  • Increasing connections in fields like healthcare, energy, transportation, tourism, and environmental protection.
  • Maintaining and ensuring regional peace, security, and stability.
  • Establishing a political and economic system that is democratic, equitable, and reasonable.
Shanghai Spirit: The Foundational Ideas
  • Internal regulations are based on the values of equality, respect for cultural variety, mutual benefit, trust, and benefit to all parties involved.
  • Openness, non-alignment, and non-targeting of any third country are the guiding principles of foreign policy.
West View on SCO
  • Moving towards the formation of a new, democratic, fair, and reasonable global political and economic order is one of the SCO's stated primary objectives.
  • The U.S. and Europe, therefore, viewed the SCO with some apprehension. Because it advocated military collaboration, it was even termed the "Anti-NATO".
  • Although China supported Russia by negotiating a 30-year, $400 billion petrol pipeline framework agreement, Western and NATO fears were increased when they imposed harsh penalties against Moscow for its activities in Crimea.
Way Ahead
  • A significant takeaway from the SCO is that it gives India a great opportunity to interact with the leaders of Central Asian nations.

India has a solid track record of economic growth and managing issues that other nations face, which paves the way for significant global investment.

Source: The Hindu

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